Sourcing a luxury product from developing countries – and paying harvesters three times the local wage – ultra clean US skincare company LXMI is a shining example of fair and sustainable business in action. LXMI CEO Anna-Maja Björkenvall shares how the planet’s well-being is at the core of the company’s product development, and not just an afterthought.

While the world may have only just “started to wake up to the severity of climate change,” global warming has been of utmost concern to LXMI since the brand’s inception. With no more time to lose, Anna-Maja calls business leaders to urgent action: “we businesses have a responsibility to act,” she says, “particularly in light of the unjust reality that, very often, it is people in poorer communities who are forced to deal with the consequences of polluted ecosystems.”

Partnering with women’s fair-trade cooperatives in developing nations to source botanical raw ingredients, LXMI gives locals a strong “financial incentive to preserve biodiversity and limit deforestation.” Anna-Maja goes on to explain, “when poor communities chop down forests, they do so because that is the fastest way to make money for survival. But when they see that they can get more money over time by keeping these natural resources alive, conservation becomes sustainable, both for the locals and the world at large. The result is a business model that combats both poverty and deforestation.”

Anna-Maja challenges businesses to ask themselves: “is the coffee ordered for the office fair-trade? Look at the vendors you do business with and the partners that you choose: any service outsourced or products procured can be provided by a social impact brand – and at no extra cost! The bottom line is that there are so many ways for us all to make a difference, if we just look for them.”

This article is part of the serialisation of interviews featured in MaltaCEOs 2022 – an annual high-end publication bringing together some of the country’s most influential business leaders.

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